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Lavish weddings or simple marriages what would you opt:

From jewellery to clothing, decorations to cuisine and wedding locales, the market is made up of several such individual segments that work and shine together.

The big fat Indian wedding is no more confined to the influential and the wealthy unlike what used to happen a few decades ago. Today, with rise in incomes and the pressure to live up to a certain standard, the industry functions across all sections of society.

It is said that marriages in India binds not just the bride and the groom, but their families as well. So it is only common that parents want to give their all to make this moment special. However, we are also a country where demands for dowry and parents taking enormous loans to wed their children are a reality. And this affects all- the rich and the poor, the urban and the rural, the literate and the illiterate.

How can then one rationalize such societal burden?

The practice of awarding dowry to girls in marriage is an ancient Indian practice. It is in fact that fraction of the parent’s wealth which they wish to give to the daughter. This helps the girls in question and the groom to start a home of their own. However, it is very sad that this custom has been vitiated in our times, and the system has become a menace, a social evil in our society.

Wedding are no longer happy events, but keep the brides, parents on tenterhooks lest the groom’s family demand unreasonable gifts on the eve of the wedding. Infact, quite often, the greedy groom or his parents do demand gift in cash or kind such as a motor car, video, etc. which the Bride parents may not be able to fulfil. Then they are caught between the devil and the deep sea. Breaking off the wedding at the last minute brings infamy to the girl. Very often false, malicious stories are spread about her so that re-engagement and marriage becomes difficult. Often girls are driven to suicidal lengths because of the tension created by such a situation.

Lavish and royal weddings by few prominent people forces the middle class to arrange their marriage with high budgets so that they show-off that they are not less than anybody and can provide all the amenities to their daughter with great pride.

There should be a law stating the number of invites in a marriage event should be limited and the restricted budget should be there so that middle and poor class people can enjoy their budget marriage. This sorry state of affair should be amended as soon as possible, and the solutions are not very easy. The law has come to our end, and giving and taking dowry is a criminal offence, and yet people fearlessly continue giving and accepting dowry with impurity. Thus it is clear that the law alone cannot solve the problem.

What we need is alteration in mindset that refuses to let go of ancient, orthodox rules in the name of tradition. Marriages in our country are celebrations; of our culture, of the society and of who we are. That an entire industry feeds off it may not be a problem as long as we do not allow it to reduce our rejoicing into a money making venture.

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